|Project by Don Johnson||posted 12-03-2010 07:42 PM||1389 views||3 times favorited||8 comments|
When I retired and we moved to our new village home, we purchased an oak desk for the lounge. This was before I got serious about woodworking, and looking at it now I realise that it is rather crude in construction – but it did the job. I have previously made some other items for the same room – also in oak – but my wife wanted more storage space for her sewing items. So I decided to make another ‘half’ desk, but with six drawers for her small items instead of three.
In making the drawer unit I drew on lots of things I have gained from LJ in the short time I have been here. The mortices (oops! I mean tenons!) for the joints were cut using a sled made after seeing Stevinmarin’s video, the drawers were constructed using the ‘simple drawer construction’ method seen in the Bridge City Kerfmaker video I viewed when making a copy of treeman’s Kerfmaker, and I was able to laminate the top using info’ gained from reading lots of stuff about cutting boards. You can see from the third picture that my sketches do not match the quality of Mafe’s miniature masterpieces, but they were helpful in making me realise which should be the fronts and which the sides of the drawer parts !! Doh!
Although I ripped, planed and squared the oak components, I thought that the drawers could be made from pre-planed stock purchased from the local DIY store. Halfway through cutting the drawer parts, I realised that although I had visually checked the lumber for straightness, knots and surface finish, I had missed the fact that one length was so very badly cupped that it was unusable and had to be replaced. The others weren’t too bad, but were not perfectly flat, so the joints did not always fit together perfectly. The valuable lesson I learned was that one cannot depend upon pre-finished material – I should have passed it though the planer/thicknesser to get dependable flat, square material!
I had another adventure when trying to get drawer handles to match those I had purchased a few years ago to replace the ugly ones originally fitted to the desk – the local store no longer stocked that version, and despite searching through thousands of pictures of handles on the ‘net, I could not find the same ones anywhere. Eventually I decided to buy 12 new handles, and I will replace those on the desk as well as fitting them to the new unit.
Happily, my wife is delighted with the new unit – which is finished with Danish Oil like the other items in the room – and I have already made her some dividers to keep things tidy in one drawer, but she wants to ‘test run’ the system before asking for more.
-- Don, Somerset UK, http://www.donjohnson24.co.uk